Council confirms its support for resettling Syrian refugees
19 August 2016
Bridgend County Borough Council has confirmed that it will be participating in the UK Government’s Syrian refugee resettlement programme, and will help to provide safe, secure accommodation for families fleeing the conflict.
Over a five-year period, 10 to 12 families could be welcomed into the county borough and given the support they need to settle in local communities and rebuild their lives.
They will be provided with suitable accommodation in the private rented sector, so no-one who is already on a housing waiting list will miss out or be asked to give up their place.
The resettlement programme prioritises help for survivors of torture and violence, women and children at risk, and those who are in need of medical care.
Syrian refugees resettling in the UK are allowed to bring their immediate family with them and are subject to strict Home Office vetting procedures.
Councillor Hailey Townsend, the council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Social Services and Equalities, said: “These are obviously extremely vulnerable people who are fleeing a war zone, and we have been working very closely with our partners to consider all aspects of how we can best support their complex needs.
“Those who are accepted on the resettlement programme will be granted refugee status, meaning that they will be able to live, work and contribute to life in this country.
“To ensure that waiting times on the Bridgend Common Housing Register will not be affected, we are working with housing associations to provide homes in the private rented sector for the refugee families, and funding is being provided by the UK Government to help the council and other agencies support them for up to five years.”
If it is still unsafe for the refugees to return home after five years, they will be able to apply to the UK Government to remain in the UK.
Council Leader Mel Nott OBE added: “I’m proud that Bridgend County Borough Council is doing its bit to help refugees who have been forced to leave everything that is familiar to them and undertake desperate measures to try and ensure the safety of their family, and I hope that residents will welcome and support them too.”